They're now estimating that the price tag will hit $8.4 billion this year. And--once again, like cable TV--that eye-popping figure is the per-month cost.
Actually, though, is $8.4 billion per month really an "eye-popping" figure? Do you understand how much money that really is? Do I?
Let's do some back-of-the-envelope figuring: $8.4 billion per month, say 30 days per month, 24 hours per day, 60 minutes per hour, 60 seconds per minute . . . hmm . . . carry the 4 . . . April, June, and November . . .
That works out to around $324 for every tenth of a second the failed Iraq war continues. Or, to put it more concretely--and remembering, again, that this is for every tenth of a second--that's roughly:
- 20 deep-dish 10" pizzas, with pepperoni, Italian sausage, garlic, mushrooms, feta, and extra roma tomatoes, from Captain Ankeny's Well in Portland OR, or
- 1 brand-name 27" color TV from Target, or
- 1 credit hour of tuition (in-state) at my undergraduate alma mater, or
- 120 gallons of gasoline at $2.699, the price I paid at the pump yesterday evening, or
- 1 month of groceries (no splurging) for two adults and two children, or
- 2-3 visits to a primary care physician.
All that, pissed away in a tenth of a second, every tenth of a second. Or, if you like, consider it this way:
Blink. That's three hundred bucks (probably at least twice that, really, unless you're an extraordinarily fast blinker).
Still not concrete enough for you? Okay, how about this: That's $324 for every time the number in the right-hand column here clicks over by one.